Crinoid Impression Fossil
This listing is for the exact specimen pictured.
Weight: 535 grams
Crinoids are marine animals that make up the class Crinoidea, one of the classes of the phylum Echinodermata, which also includes the starfish, brittle stars, sea urchins and sea cucumbers. Adult crinoids are characterized by having the mouth located on the upper surface. This is surrounded by feeding arms, and is linked to a U-shaped gut, with the anus being located on the oral disc near the mouth. Although the basic echinoderm pattern of fivefold symmetry can be recognized, in most crinoids the five arms are subdivided into ten or more. These have feathery pinnules and are spread wide to gather planktonic particles from the water. At some stage in their lives, most crinoids have a stem used to attach themselves to the substrate, but many live attached only as juveniles and become free-swimming as adults. There are only about 600 living species of crinoid, but the class was much more abundant and diverse in the past. Some thick limestone beds dating to the mid- to late-Paleozoic era are almost entirely made up of disarticulated crinoid fragments.